The satellite and cable channel Sky Atlantic today (July 1st) released the first official images and also a short trailer for Fleming, their new four-part biopic which is being co-produced with Ecosse Films and BBC America, and stars 35-year old English actor Dominic Cooper as Ian Fleming.
The four-part drama, which is being billed as a ‘no-holds-barred look at Ian Fleming’, is directed by Mat Whitecross and will be shown on Sky Atlantic,either in the autumn of 2013, or in 2014 (depending on which source you read).
The official stills released today included one of Cooper as Fleming in full naval uniform, in a pose reminiscent of a now famous real-life photo taken of the future Bond author at the Admiralty in London. Some British newspapers today also carried preview photos from the new drama. The UK’s Daily Telegraph, for example, published a behind-the-scenes still of Cooper in naval uniform, carrying a bunch of red roses, while shooting on location in London. Similarly, The Times newspaper carried another angle on the same scene, taken during a break in the filming.
Lara Pulver, who made such an impact in an episode of the BBC detective series Sherlock, co-stars in the new drama, opposite Cooper. She plays Anne O’Neill, who eventually went on to become Fleming’s wife. A key part of the new series is devoted to their rather tempestuous relationship, as well as to Fleming’s various other love affairs, especially a particularly intense one that he had with Muriel Wright (played by Annabelle Wallis), who was tragically killed during the London Blitz.
Lara Pulver was recently profiled in the BBC’s Radio Times listings magazine in April, and at one point in the interview she was asked about the Fleming/O’Neill relationship. She said of her role: ‘Their relationship was dysfunctional, abusive at times, and the script doesn’t shy away from anything’. When she was also asked whether she would like to be a Bond girl, she replied: ‘Definitely. But what is wonderful is that in a way I’m playing the ultimate Bond girl’.
Much of the drama will explore Fleming’s role in Naval Intelligence in World War Two, including his working relationship with his boss, Admiral Godfrey, who is being played by Samuel West. Some Bond historians have suggested that Godfrey was the model for 007’s boss ‘M’ in the later James Bond novels.
Ecosse Films, which was founded in 1988, has a good track-record in producing high quality drama for both film and television.